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For as long as Hank has hosted Crash Course, he's wanted to host a series about the history of science. We've been asking big questions for a really long time and we've all wanted to explore how we've sought to answer those questions through the centuries. Questions like, "What is stuff?" and "Where are we?" have inspired people all over the world to investigate. So lets dive in and see how we, as a people, have tried to figure this stuff out.

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CC Kids:
Quick question: what is stuff? Maybe that one's too big, fine. How about this one: where are we? Like, all of us - Earth, the solar system, the galaxy - where the heck are we?

These questions are a kind of starting point for the scientific method and have been asked by thinkers for a long time. They're questions that not only make us try to find answers, but make us think about how we find answers.

I'm Hank Green, and for most of my life, I've been obsessed with questions, answers, and why we ask questions and how we get those answers. To that end, ever since we started making Crash Course, I've wanted to make a series about the history of science. And now I get to do it!

If we look at that first question I asked, "what is stuff": while physicists will say that stuff is made of atoms, and atoms are made of quarks and leptons, we still don't know, like, why quarks exist. Or why there appears to be far more matter in the universe than we can account for. Which is...weird.

We don't have the answers yet. But we use a method to get at the answers, a method that we've been developing for many centuries: the scientific method. This series is going to be our chance to explore that method's development through the ages, from people like Aristotle and Plato and their weird school/cults to the Mauryan Empire and how they tied science and religion to practical things like irrigation.

The pre-industrial world was full of science and people trying to answer big questions, both because they were fascinated and because they wanted to not die. But we won't stop there. Modern history is full of us expanding our knowledge and coming up with new answers to age old questions. Making planes fly, the discovery of DNA, the space race, and, yes, unfortunately, a few bombs, have all opened new doors to our understanding of what stuff is and where we are.

So please join me this year as we look at the storied, messy, and amazing history of humans figuring stuff out, here on Crash Course History of Science.